Remember when a group of young Jews two years ago stood in a circle in Parliament Square in London in order to mourn the death of Hamas terrorists who had tried to cross the fence from Gaza into Israel in order to murder Israelis? How can anyone forget this atrocity….
You are not going to believe this………. Jeremy Schonfield, the academic who is the father of one of the ringleaders, Amos Schonfield – a Board member of Yachad – has an article in a recent academic Journal (European Judaism) discussing what Jewish prayer would have been appropriate for the occasion!
His reponse to the many of us who found the event deeply offensive is simply risible. He says we need to understand that the Kaddish prayer is used in a different way by the ‘Progressive’ (?) Community from the Orthodox one. No! Where I come from you respect the practices of those more observant than you!
Schonfield’s article is a complete whitewash of the obscene event. The article isn’t entitled ‘Kaddish for Hamas’ – it’s merely ‘Kaddish for Gaza’. It doesn’t speak of ‘terrorists being shot’; rather it is ‘Palestinians’! There’s no mention of what the terrorists would have done if they had succeeded in entering Israel; oh no, it’s a mere ‘March over the border to Israel’, as if they were a troupe of Boy Scouts chanting Dib Dib Dob.
Of course Schonfield has it in for the IDF: ‘By shooting to kill, Israel gave Hamas more civilian casualties and damaged her own cause, much as when she invaded Gaza in 2014 to destroy tunnels that could have been located from inside Israel’.
From his bunker in deepest Hendon (?) Schonfield lectures the IDF in operational procedures! He has clearly failed to read the IDF’s comprehensive account of Israel’s actions to defend Israelis from possible incursions during the March of Return:
And ‘women and children misled’? When Israel gave warning after warning? What has he been smoking?
The IDF soldiers manning the border came under sustained attack from countless grenades and explosive devices. They were shot at and Molotov cocktails were thrown at them. These were obviously ‘exceptional circumstances’ and under the IDF’s operation procedures, live fire was justified. Would Schonfield rather that hundreds of terrorists made it into Israel, to commit mass murder? Who is Schonfield to state – from the comfort of ?Hendon – that there was no ‘immediate threat to life’ to those IDF soldiers and that they ‘should have used non-lethal force’? Suppose it was HIS son Amos who was one of those soldiers? Would he be so sickenly dismissive about the dangers the IDF faced?
Schonfield – who to the best of my knowledge has zero military experience – thinks that Israel’s Operation Protective Edge in Gaza in 2014 could have been avoided if the terror tunnels had been located ‘from inside Israel’. See those flying pigs? You think Hamas place flags and floodlights on top of the tunnel entrances for the convenience of the IDF? No – they used UN facilities,schools, hospitals, mosques and residential buildings as covers for tunnel entrances. Some 550 rockets and mortars were fired from within or near these places.
What is this ‘technology’ that Schonfield thinks Israel should have used to find the tunnel entrances? So easy from ?Hendon isn’t it .. Notice his use of the impersonal verb (‘It was felt’) to try to convey the sense of a consensus – when the reality is that there was no such thing.
Back to Parliament Square. In the time-honoured tradition of bullies everywhere, victims become perpetrators. Look what Schonfield says: “The quietness and dignity of the ceremony suggested that thought was being invited”. What is he smoking? He is in a position of responsibility in the Jewish Community and he seriously thinks that saying Kaddish for genocidal Hamas terrorists is DIGNIFIED?
Then we read ‘Hecklers featured prominently, unsurprisingly given the hostility of the filmmakers, but showed little sign of quietness, dignity or thought, and instead brought spitting anger, unprintable abuse and threats of actual physical violence. Their uncontrolled aggression is one of the more unsettling scenes that some of us have seen in Anglo-Jewry in recent years, or ever’.
What a Chillul Hashem – a complete disgrace. The filmmaker – Joseph of Israel Advocacy Movement, was remarkably polite and restrained. In addition there were two pro-Israel activists there who were sickened by the event. The first was Yochy Davis. She rightly called out ‘Shame on you’. Two of the Kaddish celebrants – Daniel Mackintosh and Jon Roiser – pathetically tried to stop her filming by standing in front of her (she is half their size!). The other was Martin Hizer who arrived near the end and gave the treacherous idiots a piece of his mind. His language is colourful and fully justified.
How telling that the father of one of the ringleaders of the shameful event exonerates his son, instead criticising the two who rightly spoke out. That’s not fatherhood. It’s an indulgent cop-out.
So it continues. Look at this:
The intentions of the ‘Gaza victims’ (aka Hamas terrorists) were UNCERTAIN? When they were queuing up to get into Israel and murder Israelis?
More: Offence to Jews would have been avoided by ‘an act of text study’ followed by ‘Kaddish de-Rabanan’? What! I have said Kaddish for both my parents and was profoundly offended by the obscenity in Parliament Square. Many many others were too. Changing the prayer would have been like rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic.
And what’s this about offence to MUSLIMS? Is Schonfield seriously saying that there are Muslims who are offended by the recitation of Kaddish for their Hamas terrorist co-religionists? And that we should care if they were? And that they would be less offended by ‘an act of text study’ followed by ‘Kaddish de-Rabanan’?
This is Interfaith Gone Mad.
I’m reminded of John Bohannon’s famous sting when more than half of 305 online journals accepted a fake science paper. Except Schonfield’s paper isn’t a fake.
It gets worse still – if that’s possible. Feast your eyes on this……….
Yes you read correctly! If instead of thousands of Hamas terrorists massing at the Gaza border fence intent on killing Israelis, it was thousands of Jews massing at the Gaza border fence intent on killing Israelis, would we still support the IDF using live fire as a last resort? Again, what has he been smoking? It’s so ridiculous it’s beyond parody!
Shame on the Editor of “European Judaism”, Rabbi Prof Jonathan Magonet , for accepting such unadulterated drivel for publication. And shame on the Editorial Board. And shame on whoever refereed the article (Did anyone…………?)
Jeremy Schonfield’s late father was Rabbi Dr Solomon Schonfeld who rescued hundreds of people from the Nazis. One can’t help but wonder what he would have thought about his grandson’s role in Kaddish for Hamas and his son’s subsequent total distortion and whitewashing of the event.
If you still have the stomach, Yisrael Medad’s comments on Schonfield’s article are here (he documents how Schonfield misreads Biblical and Rabbinical texts).
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